Alpha Lambda Delta is sponsoring Wittenberg President Mark H. Erickson's participation in the university's CROP Walk on Sunday, Sept. 23. His wife, Lin Erickson, Wittenberg's director of government, corporate and foundation relations, is also taking part in the event. Wittenberg's CROP Walk is part of a nationwide hunger appeal by the humanitarian agency Church World Service. This year alone, the organization expects more than 2,000 communities to join in hunger walks under the banner of CROP: Communities Responding to Overcome Poverty.
The CROP Walk sign-in begins at 1:30 p.m. Sunday at the stage in front of Wittenberg's Benham-Pence Student Center. Participants – or groups of participants representing campus organizations – raise money before the event, with donations split between Springfield's Second Harvest Food Pantry and Church World Service, which supports humanitarian efforts throughout the world.
Wittenberg's CROP Walk has a long history and is currently planned by Weaver Chapel Association (WCA) and the university's Office of the Pastor. Student coordinators Joyce Partyka, class of 2010 from Lowell, Ind., and Christina Fetheroff, class of 2008 from Carroll, Ohio, have more than 50 faculty, staff and students signed up this year. Participants will walk more than three miles following a route through the heart of Springfield on South Fountain Avenue.
Alpha Lambda Delta representatives have been manning CROP Walk tables in the student center to collect money for Erickson's walk. Donations can also be made online. Wittenberg's CROP Walk is on an alphabetical list under the heading "Fall Walks." For more information, contact University Pastor Rachel Tune at (937) 327-7413 or by e-mail at email@example.com or Alpha Lambda Delta President Laura Schumaker, class of 2010 from Springfield, Ohio, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Alpha Lambda Delta emphasizes that educated persons have the added responsibility to make meaningful contributions to society. The Wittenberg chapter organizes a service project each year during the fall semester, and in 2007-08 that involves raising money for Erickson's CROP Walk participation. Schumaker said this is the first of several activities during the 2007-08 school year to promote the organization and continue to increase its membership.
"Our big push this year is to give as much as possible to Wittenberg and the Springfield community, and our large membership allows us to have a positive impact on both," Schumaker said.
Nationally, Alpha Lambda Delta inducts both men and women, but at Wittenberg the first-year honoraries are split between Alpha Lambda Delta for women and Phi Eta Sigma for men. In addition, the Wittenberg chapter is one of the oldest in the nation, founded in 1937, and today it is one of more than 250 chapters throughout the United States.
The award is presented annually to chapters that show a notable increase in membership during a single year, and Wittenberg's chapter met the criteria with a 10 percent jump during the 2006-07 academic year. At the conclusion of the first semester of the 2006-07 school year, 116 female first-year students were eligible for Alpha Lambda Delta, and 95 of them joined. Membership is open to full-time freshmen female students who earn a scholastic average of 3.5 or better during their first semester at a four-year college or university.
Founded in the spring of 1924 at the University of Illinois, Alpha Lambda Delta is a national honor society that recognizes and encourages academic excellence among first-year students. More than 700,000 students have been initiated into membership since the first chapter was established.
Written By: Ryan Maurer
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